Sports Medicine

Cupping for Athletes and Weekend Warriors in Denver

By |2016-08-31T16:12:51+00:00August 31st, 2016|Acupuncture, Sports Medicine, Traditional Chinese Medicine|

Cupping, an ancient healing tool that has been traced back to ancient Egypt, China, Europe, Africa and Native American cultures and has gained worldwide attention after Michael Phelps, United States Gold Medal Olympic swimmer, swam in the 2016 Rio Olympics with circular bruise marks on his back and shoulder, caused by cupping. 36FE14F900000578-0-image-a-12_1470640774760
Phelps has been using this therapy technique to help his muscles recover and perform at their best. It involves a therapist heating small glass cups, then placing them on the skin and pulling them from the body to loosen and relax the muscles.
Michael Phelps is a firm believer in the power of cupping, “Our bodies are going to hurt after doing this for so long. It’s the best thing that I’ve ever had. It has saved me from a lot of pain.”
What is cupping?
The treatment creates a partial vacuum on the skin using cups. The result is a suction that increases blood and energy flow to the area. The increase of circulation facilitates localized healing. Cupping relieves pain is by opening up the meridians, or energy channels, of the body and improving energy flow to every organ and tissue of the body. Cupping also triggers body tissues to release toxins and activates the lymphatic system which helps to alleviate aches and pains.
The cupping process:
Glass cups are fitted with a valve that attaches to a small hand-operated pump, allowing the practitioner to suck out air without having to rely on fire to depressurize the cup first. It also gives them greater control over the amount of suction. The modern name for cupping is baguanfa or suction cup therapy.
In order to allow the cups to move over the skin easily, oil is used. Oils that have been infused with extracts of medicinal herbs are particularly useful. The cups are applied at room temperature, and there is some friction generated with moving cups, causing a small but significant amount of heat, especially if a warming oil is also used.
Cups are generally left in place for ten minutes although the time can range from five to fifteen minutes. The skin will redden due to the congestion of blood flow and some bruising on the skin is to be expected.
What can cupping relieve?
This natural treatment isn’t only great for general body aches, pain, and stress. Cupping can be an excellent noninvasive treatment for:

  • Acute pain such as sprains and strains
  • Dull aches and pains, arthritis
  • Edema and swellings
  • Respiratory issues like asthma, chronic cough, and bronchitis
  • Abdominal pain, stomachache and indigestion
  • Painful menstruation and associated low back pain
  • Coughs from excessive mucus

The Wellness Center is your premier place for getting cupping in Denver.  We can work with you to create the perfect treatment plan based on your unique needs and lifestyle.  Cupping can be done is just a 30 minute session with one of our skilled practitioners.
If you are interested in booking a cupping session, you can book with any of the following Denver cupping therapists:
Acupuncturists: Dr. Shwu-Yar Tsai and Gabriella Rivera, L.Ac
Chiropractor: Dr. Tim Price
Massage Therapists: Amie Kern, CMT, Linda Moiseyev, CMT and Shannon McFall – Michelson, CMT

Why Choose Sports Massage?

By |2014-06-13T09:57:32+00:00June 13th, 2014|Sports Medicine|

Summer is right around the corner. Due to the interesting spring, however, my body is craving a walk, a bike ride, a good lift in the gym, or just a full day of sunshine! But what keeps me from actually doing any of this stuff is the thought of getting back into the routine. In other words, I’m not a big fan of feeling sore or tired, and I know that my first few workouts will consist of burning lungs and lazy muscles.
But one thing is consistent in all active people: whether we’re starting a new workout routine or training for a high school sports team, our muscles need continual maintenance. Even if you or your young athlete doesn’t feel a need or consistent craving for a tune up, the longer we go without recovering, the harder it’s going to hit us later.
So what can we do?
The Wellness Center offers “Sports Massages” for people who are or want to be more active – athletes or non-athletes alike. This means that a Sports massage is for anyone, of any age, doing anything from marathon training or playing competitive sports to mowing the lawn or moving a couch.
Think of a Sports massage as treating your muscles to tune-ups. They will not only help some of us get back into a routine, like me, but they will also help us stay in a routine and increase the odds of staying injury-free. The purpose, then, behind this type of therapy, is to prepare, recover, and maintain muscles before, during, and after any type of physical activity.
The two types of Sports massages are “Preventative Sports Massages” and “Conditioning/Maintenance Sports Massages.” Preventative Sports Massages are designed to prevent injuries as we get into our routine of activities. These sessions are designed to prepare and relax the body for and from physical strain; though, stretching and other preventative measures can be taken for injury prevention. Conditioning/Maintenance Sports Massages, on the other hand, are designed to treat the body of an already active person. It will simply improve your or your young athlete’s current physical condition and performance.
A Sports massage uses slow, light pressure strokes in order to relax and release the muscles. Unlike a Swedish massage, which uses long strokes, or a Deep-tissue massage, which uses deep pressure, a Sports massage will not allow your muscles to get sorer or spasm; instead, getting a Sports massage is like giving your body extra credit – it will improve your overall performance in your chosen activity no matter what.
Maybe if I had started Sports massages sooner, I’d be in better shape today. But the good news is that it’s never too late to get back in the game! That’s what I plan on doing, and that’s what I often tell my young athletes…even though they still think they’re invincible!
If you are considering a Sports Massage for you, contact The Wellness Center today at 303-357-9355. If your young athlete could benefit from a Sports massage, here are some tips that should help make the experience comfortable and therapeutic:
1. Choose a Wellness Center therapist with the same gender as your child.
2. Start with a shorter sessions time (30-45 minutes).
3. Have them dress in comfortable clothing that will allow for active stretching during the session.
4. Consider being in the room during the massage to alleviate any hesitation on your or your child’s part.
Whether you’re like me and are a little intimidated getting back into it, or if you or your young athlete want to up the personal or competitive performances, consider getting a Sports massage today.

Injury Prevention – Spring Sports and More…

By |2013-04-15T19:48:35+00:00April 15th, 2013|Sports Medicine|

injury prevention - spring sportsIt’s outdoor season in CO again, and many people are getting outside, getting exercise, having fun – and getting hurt. If you or someone you know is unlucky enough to get a sports injury, this sunny season may be a good time to consider Traditional Chinese Medicine. How acupuncture can help to relieve the pain and inflammation caused by sports injuries. Athletes from Western cultures may be skeptical of the idea that fine needles inserted just under the skin at specific locations can heal injuries and relieve pain effectively. However, this ancient form of medicine has proven effective against many causes of pain and discomfort.
Traditional Chinese medicine sees the body as requiring balance between two kinds of energy, termed Yin and Yang. Together these are balanced through interaction. Chi circulates throughout the body. When a patient has a sport injury or other trauma, the flow of Chi becomes blocked at the injury. By analogy, driving to Denver on highway 36, I can drive 75 mph easily when the traffic flow is very clear. However, when there is a slow down and traffic suddenly appears, that means something is happening on the highway somewhere. If we think about the flow of traffic on I-25 and I-70, it’s clear that the smooth flow on both roads is easily influenced by small traffic mishaps. In the same way, a relatively small injury can slow down or totally stop the flow of Chi. The site of injury on our body may swell up and become painful, warm to the touch, inflamed, stiff, and the muscle may even cramp or spasm. The needling (acupuncture) used in Traditional Chinese Medicine triggers the release of endorphins and other chemicals in the brain that compose the nervous system’s first line of defense against tissue damage. Needling also speeds up the healing process by increasing the flow of Chi and blood into the affected area. The acupuncturist places the needles in specific points after making a diagnosis, and the needles modulate the flow of Chi, redirecting it and then clearing the blockage of energy.
See how acupuncture can help you boost performance and prevent injury in your spring and summer sports. Call us for a free 30-minute consultation – 303-357-9355

Comments Off on Injury Prevention – Spring Sports and More…